Great Start 4 Kids – Parent Leaders

Michigan’s Trusted Advisor Program has been recognized throughout the nation for supporting and empowering parents as leaders. The purpose of Michigan’s Trusted Advisors Grants is to engage Great Start Parent Coalitions, through competitive grant funding opportunities, to strengthen parent engagement through leadership development and training. The goal of Great Start Trusted Advisors is to improve connections to families with at-risk children birth to age 5 who are challenged by early learning and program development availability and related community supports. By receiving appropriate materials and information about the importance of early childhood learning and leadership development, parents are empowered to become Trusted Advisors who exhibit key leader roles within the Great Start network; as well as taking on Trusted Advisor roles that develop action plans to recruit new parent leaders and to focus on the development of children in specific networks: physical, cognitive and social-emotional learning domains.

Parent Engagement

It is essential to engage parents in the work of Great Start. Parent leaders are the key to the success of Great Start.

Common Parent Leadership Roles

  • Identifying ‘hard to reach parents
  • Connecting with families with the ‘greatest needs’
  • Providing families resources to access services
  • Disseminating books to all families
  • Supplying book mailboxes with books
  • Facilitating parent leadership training workshops
  • Mentoring parents
  • Recruiting parents to attend parent meetings and leadership trainings
  • Organizing parent meeting agendas
  • Attending Great Start Collaborative Meetings
  • Assisting in Parent Coalition Meeting scheduling and presentations
  • Presenting early childhood and parenting information at childcare centers
  • Coordinating Raise A Reader Education Series Events
  • Implementing Book Walk Events